Facebook Moves to Eliminate Spam on Business Pages

By Mikal E. Belicove

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Back in the fall of 2008, Facebook sued Montreal-based spammer Atlantis Blue Capital, and its owner Adam Guerbuez, for repeatedly spamming Facebook members. In what many view as a landmark CAN-SPAM-related judgment, US federal judge Jeremy Fogel awarded Facebook an astonishing $873 million dollars in punitive damages. Now, just days after a Canadian court upheld judge Fogel's Nov. 2008 ruling, Facebook has unveiled a new weapon for Business Page administrators to combat spam and punish the miscreants who insist on bombarding us with annoying messages and unsavory advertisements.

From Facebook's Help section comes this announcement: "Facebook is now helping Page admins ensure that the most valuable content posted by users on their Page wall is more visible to anyone viewing the Page. We are now offering automatic content filtering on Page walls that will ensure that posts soliciting spam are removed from public view as well as ensure that posts containing good content remain more visible."

Here's how Facebook's new automatic spam content filtering system works:

  • Anytime someone posts something to your Page's wall that Facebook's algorithm considers junk, it marks it as spam, resulting in the item being removed from the Page until such time as the Page admin tells Facebook otherwise.
  • To view any possible posts marked as spam, click Settings (located just below your Business Page's Share button), followed by the link for Spam.

  • Next, if anything appears on screen (like the item above, for instance), hover your mouse over the top right corner of the post until you see the "X" appear.
  • Click X, and then -- using the ensuing drop-down menu as shown below -- click Remove Post, or Unmark as Spam.

You have to figure that removing a post that's already been categorized by Facebook as "spam" is more powerful than flagging or removing a post not marked as spam. In other words, if Facebook's algorithm considers the item spam and you agree, the algorithm is validated and becomes a stronger weapon in the fight against spam and unsavory advertisements.

On the surface, all of this seems just fine. But I've observed unintended consequences. In many cases, posts that are not spam are being tagged as such. (From what I can tell, posts containing images and links appear to be most susceptible to the algorithm.) And since the owners of the post are not made aware that their items are being treated as spam, no one's the wiser until the Page admin clicks into your wall settings and reviews items flagged as spam.

Mitigating this is the assumption that Facebook's spam algorithm learns as it goes. If you tell Facebook to unmark a post as spam, the system should treat that post's owner more fairly in the future when posting to your business' wall. Still, like all new features, it's incumbent on Page admins to get into the habit of checking it as part of your company's daily Facebook routine.

Mikal E. Belicove is a market positioning, social media, and management consultant specializing in website usability and business blogging. His latest book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Facebook, is now available at bookstores. 

Editor's Pick

Related Topics


Reach New Levels of Productivity By Treating Your Personal Life Like a Work Project

Just as in business, managing personal time to emphasize efficiency and efficacy pays off in remarkable ways.

Business News

The Internet Can't Get Enough of These Heartwarming Christmas Trees for Under $10: 'A Little Charlie Brown Christmas'

One TikToker has garnered over 1.1 million views after showing viewers what she found at her local Five Below store.

Business News

Elevate Your Personal Brand with AI

The importance of personal branding in today's competitive environment.


Looking For a College Admissions Consultant? Don't Miss These 3 Key Traits

Not all college consultants are created equal. With hundreds of options available, it's imperative that you feel confident in the service you're entrusting with your money and, more importantly, your child's future. Here's how to spot the extraordinary ones.

Business News

SmileDirectClub Customers Speak Out After Company Ends Operations Without Warning

The telehealth orthodontics company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September.